HOUSTON, TEXAS–In March 2014, a human stash house containing 115 individuals was discovered in Houston, Texas. Court documents obtained by Breitbart Texas state that five individuals, Jose Aviles-Villa, Jonathan Solorzano-Tavila, Antonio Barruquet-Hildiberta, Jose Cesmas-Borja, and Eugenio Sesmas-Borja, pled guilty to conspiracy and firearms charges in relation to the stash house. At least two of the five defendants admitted to being in the United States illegally.
The defendants were arrested on March 19, after being accused of “detaining and threatening” hostages found in the stash house to extort money.
According to a plea agreement obtained by Breitbart Texas, the five men face 15 years in prison and three years of subsequent supervised release. The agreement further stated, “If the defendant is not a citizen of the United States, a plea of guilty may result in deportation, exclusion from admission to the United States, or the denial of naturalization.”
Police discovered the home, located on Almeda School Road, after receiving a call from the mother of a missing woman who was in the U.S. illegally. Houston Police Department (HPD) spokesperson John Cannon told Breitbart Texas the woman’s family members “were told to go to a location in North Houston and exchange ransom money to pick up the woman and her two kids. When the suspect did not show up, the family became concerned and contacted the HPD.”
HPD officers targeted the Almeda School Road home after tracing phone records of the victims’ family. Officers initially entered the home to find the missing woman and her two children. They were not ready for the scene that awaited them.
Cannon told Breitbart Texas that officers found “a sea of people, some sitting on top of each other” inside the small home, which had boards on the windows and deadbolts on the doors. A criminal complaint said, “A wooden paddle, a stungun, two shotguns, and several types of ammunition were found inside the residence.”
“There was one bathroom, no hot water, and a toilet that was only partially working,” Cannon said. “We got all the people out of the home. They were very tired and hungry so we provided them with food and water.”
Solorzano-Tavila, Barruquet-Hildiberta and Sesmas-Borja attempted to flee the scene when officers arrived. They were arrested and later charged with conspiracy to detain and threaten foreign nationals, along with Aviles-Villa and Cesmas-Borja.
The San Antonio Express-News reported that the defendants will be sentenced in July.
Follow Kristin Tate on Twitter @KristinBTate